70-200 f4 VR tested on Photozone

Started Feb 2, 2013 | Discussions
Lance B Forum Pro • Posts: 30,452
70-200 f4 VR tested on Photozone
1
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JimPearce
JimPearce Veteran Member • Posts: 9,153
Hmm...

200mm @ f5.6

Lens        center, border, extreme

f2.8 VR    3935, 3284, 2786

f2.8 VR II 3782, 3498, 3293

f4            3690, 3116, 3018

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Jim

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sfnikon Senior Member • Posts: 2,277
Looks like 2.8/VRII tested better

The new lens' main advantage seems to be size and price but optically it does not equal the gold standard.

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Jake

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JimPearce
JimPearce Veteran Member • Posts: 9,153
I'd say the 70-200 VR tested better too...

An internet myth nipped in the bud?

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Jim

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OP Lance B Forum Pro • Posts: 30,452
Re: I'd say the 70-200 VR tested better too...

JimPearce wrote:

An internet myth nipped in the bud?

If this is representative of the lens as a whole, then it would appear so. However, this is only at one focus distance and maybe it does better at longer or shorter subject distances. I wish these lens testing sites would do tests at 3 different subject distances.

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superbaguy Contributing Member • Posts: 644
Re: Looks like 2.8/VRII tested better

I consider CA control to be advantageous.  But why not go for the platinum standard and grab a 200 f2....wow!

sfnikon wrote:

The new lens' main advantage seems to be size and price but optically it does not equal the gold standard.

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Jake

anotherMike Veteran Member • Posts: 8,678
Re: I'd say the 70-200 VR tested better too...

You're preaching to the proverbial choir lance!

Unfortunately there isn't a good way to test at the really long distances with imatest. One would have to invest in an optical bench (like Roger at lensrentals has) for infinity type testing.

As for the 70-200/4 - the photozone test about mirrors my thoughts when I tried the 70-200/4 lens out for evaluation - nice for sure, but it simply didn't have that "wow" / "bite" / microcontrast at the closer distance ranges the VR2 F/2.8 version does. However, at distance, it looked pretty good in my evaluation. Might be optimized for things further out, which wouldn't surprise me. Either way, while nice, it didn't impress me enough to consider buying one since it wouldn't offer any image quality benefit over what I already have.

-m

jhinkey
jhinkey Senior Member • Posts: 2,802
Re: 70-200 f4 VR tested on Photozone

I found that at distance my 70-200/4 was sharper than my 70-200/2.8VRII at 200mm - particularly in the corners.  At shorter focal lengths it was not quite as sharp as the f/2.8.

At close range I found the opposite.  The 70-200/4 was very very sharp even wide open at 70 to 135mm, but at 200mm it got a bit soft (though still very very usable).

All on my D800.

So I think it very much matters at what distance the test target is at.

Also, my first copy was decentered.  My second copy was better, but it also seems to be decentered in the opposite direction - so it's going to Nikon for adjustment week after next.

I used the TC20EIII a bit and was very surprised at how good the 70-200/4 was stopped down one stop to f/11 at 200mm.

VR is the best of any VR lens I have.

Remember photozone tested only one sample . . . .

John

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OP Lance B Forum Pro • Posts: 30,452
Re: I'd say the 70-200 VR tested better too...

anotherMike wrote:

You're preaching to the proverbial choir lance!

Unfortunately there isn't a good way to test at the really long distances with imatest. One would have to invest in an optical bench (like Roger at lensrentals has) for infinity type testing.

As for the 70-200/4 - the photozone test about mirrors my thoughts when I tried the 70-200/4 lens out for evaluation - nice for sure, but it simply didn't have that "wow" / "bite" / microcontrast at the closer distance ranges the VR2 F/2.8 version does. However, at distance, it looked pretty good in my evaluation. Might be optimized for things further out, which wouldn't surprise me. Either way, while nice, it didn't impress me enough to consider buying one since it wouldn't offer any image quality benefit over what I already have.

-m

Your opinion and lens expertise is considered very highly be me and I am sure many others as well on this forum. You could and should get a jod doing lens reports!

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HSway
HSway Veteran Member • Posts: 3,147
But whichever you mean Jim..

JimPearce wrote:

An internet myth nipped in the bud?

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Jim

You mean by dxomark?

Where's your love for it people now?

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OP Lance B Forum Pro • Posts: 30,452
Re: But whichever you mean Jim..

HSway wrote:

JimPearce wrote:

An internet myth nipped in the bud?

-- hide signature --

Jim

You mean by dxomark?

Where's your love for it people now?

Meaning what exactly?

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HSway
HSway Veteran Member • Posts: 3,147
Re: But whichever you mean Jim..

Lance B wrote:

HSway wrote:

JimPearce wrote:

An internet myth nipped in the bud?

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Jim

You mean by dxomark?

Where's your love for it people now?

Meaning what exactly?

Lance B

Jim posted resolution data. I refer to dxomark ironically. Hard to figure it out?

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inasir1971
inasir1971 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,611
Why not a 100-400/4.5-5.6?
2

I'm not sure what need this fills.

At f/4 it's not a fast lens by any means. So for subject isolation or for indoor shooting of sports events you would be better off with an f/2.8.

For reach, 200mm isn't much. Adding a 2x TC will take it to a 140-200mm lens and it would be f/8. That would mean it is compatible with AF only with the latest bodies, but only them and then with limited AF coverage. Stopping down 1 stop would place you well into diffraction territory so that would be less than optimal for cameras like the D800 and D7000 - even more so for the new crop of 24MP DX cameras. f/8 is also very slow for wildlife shooters who might find it difficult to get the shutter speeds needed.

Finally, it's not cheap particularly given that the pricey lens foot isn't included.

Wouldn't a better performing and updated AF-S 80-400 have served the needs of the likely users better?

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labalaba Contributing Member • Posts: 622
Re: 70-200 f4 VR tested on Photozone
2

It's probably not my business to comment but I do not understand the immense concern to compare the 70-200 F4 to the 70-200 F2.8 lenses. I pre-ordered the 70-200VR F4 and find it a very nice lens (on a d700). Does it really matter which of these lenses is sharper? They are all excellent. The big difference is the obvious one, F4 is not F2.8. If you need the best zoom for all purposes, you need the 2.8, end of story. Where I am still unsure about the F4 lens is that while it is smaller, lighter, and cheaper than the 2.8 zooms, it is not small, light, or cheap; it's certainly not a discrete lens for street photography, for instance, or a pocket zoom for mountaineers. The more difficult decision people will face is between the 70-200 F4 and the 70-300 VR or other similar lenses. As such, the 70-200 F4 falls in an already crowded market segment.

Shotcents
Shotcents Veteran Member • Posts: 4,472
Re: Why not a 100-400/4.5-5.6?
1

inasir1971 wrote:

I'm not sure what need this fills.

At f/4 it's not a fast lens by any means. So for subject isolation or for indoor shooting of sports events you would be better off with an f/2.8.

For reach, 200mm isn't much. Adding a 2x TC will take it to a 140-200mm lens and it would be f/8. That would mean it is compatible with AF only with the latest bodies, but only them and then with limited AF coverage. Stopping down 1 stop would place you well into diffraction territory so that would be less than optimal for cameras like the D800 and D7000 - even more so for the new crop of 24MP DX cameras. f/8 is also very slow for wildlife shooters who might find it difficult to get the shutter speeds needed.

Finally, it's not cheap particularly given that the pricey lens foot isn't included.

Wouldn't a better performing and updated AF-S 80-400 have served the needs of the likely users better?

Yes.

The 80-200, 70-200 VR1 and VRII were really all we needed. I only saw people asking for a slow 70-200 online.

The 80-400 update is what most are now waiting for. I was so miserable when I tried the 70-200 F4 (It's just like the Canon version I had) and uninspired that I ordered a Tamron 70-300 VC!

I sure hope they update the 80-400 soon.

Robert

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larrywilson
larrywilson Veteran Member • Posts: 5,883
Re: Why not a 100-400/4.5-5.6?

I don't buy a zoom lens such as the Nikon f4.0 70-200, then put a tc 2.0EIII on it and expect an execellant image.  I wouldn't buy this lens for reach, a longer focal length fixed lens is much, much better.  These dam teleconverters are just not as good as any of the native lenses, especially with converters ugh!!!!  I buy zoom lens to keep inside the zoom range without converters.

I bought the Nikon 70-200 f4.0 lens to shoot images from 70-200 period.

Larry

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inasir1971
inasir1971 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,611
Re: Why not a 100-400/4.5-5.6?

errr, kind of my point Larry I think many would have liked a somewhat longer lens natively

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Josh152 Senior Member • Posts: 1,999
Re: 70-200 f4 VR tested on Photozone

I wish photozone would review the new Tamron 70-200 f/2.8 VC.  I am much more interested in how the 70-200 F4 Nikkor compares to that lens since they are so close in price.

Freedolin Regular Member • Posts: 484
Re: 70-200 f4 VR tested on Photozone

We will of course review the Tamron, too. However, it's simply not available in Nikon mount, yet.

Markus (photozone.de)

jhinkey
jhinkey Senior Member • Posts: 2,802
Re: Why not a 100-400/4.5-5.6?
3

Shotcents wrote:


The 80-200, 70-200 VR1 and VRII were really all we needed. I only saw people asking for a slow 70-200 online.

Robert

When you are saying "we" to whom were you specifically referring to?  Because your "we" did not include me.  And were else besides online did you find people to talk to about wanting a f/4 70-200 or not?

I have the 80-200AFS and 70-200AFS VRII and I certainly wanted a slow, high IQ, excellent VR, great build 70-200/4.  In fact I bought one I wanted it so much . . . .

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